The payments juggernaut PayPal announced this morning that it had hired a new CEO. PayPal’s board members announced this morning in a news statement that top Intuit executive Alex Chriss will succeed current CEO Dan Schulman as president and CEO of PayPal effective September 27, 2023.
After a protracted hunt for a new CEO with expertise in technology, product development, and international payments, the appointment was finalized.
Chriss joined Intuit 19 years ago, and like Schulman, he remained a long-time employee, gradually increasing his responsibilities. He has been the group’s executive vice president and general manager since January 2019, and the division is in charge of more than half of Intuit’s income. He has been in charge of a large, international company that employs thousands of people to serve thousands of clients with products like QuickBooks and Mailchimp.
According to the board’s announcement, in his most recent leadership position, he increased the company’s customers and sales at a compound annual growth rate of 20% and 23%, respectively. Additionally, he oversaw the $12 billion purchase of Mailchimp by Intuit in 2021.
PayPal’s board and CEO search committee, entrusted with identifying a replacement for longtime CEO Schulman, who told PayPal of its plans to retire at the end of last year, have unanimously endorsed Chriss. According to CNBC, Chriss was selected from a group of nine applicants. According to its report, the board also held meetings with over 20 investors, including activist investor Elliott Management.
“Alex is the perfect leader to take PayPal forward and accelerate the company’s growth opportunities,” said John Donahoe, chair of the PayPal Board of Directors, in a statement. “With his depth of experience in product development, his passion for serving customers, his longstanding commitment to empowering and enabling small businesses, and his proven track record of developing and inspiring his team, Alex is the perfect leader.” The Board search committee put a lot of effort into finding the ideal candidate to lead PayPal into its next phase of growth and expansion, and we are sure that Alex is that person.
Chriss joins PayPal at a time when the business is reorganizing; in February, it said it was letting go of 2,000 full-time employees, or 7% of its staff, citing the macroeconomic situation as the reason. It stated that the roughly $600 million in savings would be used to fund new initiatives, including passwordless checkout, one-click in-app interactions, and the use of AI for more complex checkout processes.
Additionally, Donahoe commended PayPal’s CEO at the time, Peter Schulman, for “outstanding leadership during PayPal’s eight years of growth as an independent company.”
He remarked, “Dan made many significant contributions to PayPal and helped lay the strong groundwork for the future.”
After PayPal’s split from eBay in 2014, outgoing CEO Schulman initially joined the company. Paypal increased its sales from $9.2 billion in 2015 to $27.5 billion in 2022 under his direction, with the number of active accounts more than doubling to over 430 million across 200 regions. Additionally, the total number of payments climbed five times, from $288 billion in 2015 to $1.36 trillion in 2022.
“I’m proud of what we have accomplished at PayPal and of the incredibly talented and committed people I work with every day,” Schulman said in a statement. Together, we have redefined financial services and e-commerce in order to enhance our consumers’ financial well-being. Every day, PayPal helps its users and communities, and the business is well-positioned for the future. Being given the chance to run this fantastic firm for the past 8 and a half years has been a wonderful honour. But right now in my life, I want to spend more time pursuing my interests outside of work.I’m still fully dedicated to collaborating with the Board and my ultimate successor to guarantee a seamless transition and that we maintain our forward momentum, “he stated.
Schulman will continue to serve on the board of PayPal through the May 2024 annual stockholders’ meeting.
The stock of PayPal has increased by almost 2% this morning, indicating that investors are responding favourably to the news.